Tag Archive | healing

Starting Over

I have been absent for a very long time.   But I am still here and I am still continuing my story

Dec 10, 2017 – 

Well, today is the day.  I go back to work.  I’m excited but also a bit hesitant at the same time.  All I know, is that I’m ready.   I feel like I’ve had plenty of time off to work on ‘me’.   I’ve been out of work since Aug. 4th and it’s time.  I don’t feel 100% but I can say,  I am on the mend.   Can’t wait to see my people.  I’ve missed them.   I’m ready for this new day.  Ready for this new start. 

Here we goooooo!!!

a new day, new start

And fierce I was.  It felt soo good to be back at work.   Gosh, I missed all my people.  I missed my work family.    I needed to go back.   I needed all of them.   I needed my normal routine back.  I needed to feel like ‘me’.  It did me good.  I was happy and all smiles.   

All of my co-workers were respectful of my wish to keep things private.   Yes, I still want my privacy.   No,  I don’t feel like getting into details with anyone about why I was gone.  I just don’t want to.   I don’t wanna talk about it.   I would rather write down all my feelings, details and my journey and share them here, with all of you.   I go to work, to work. 

Everyone was welcoming and happy to see me.   I went in sporting my new hairdo and I rocked it.  My day went well.  There were a few customers that just HAD TO KNOW where I had been and why the drastic new look with my hair.  I’m sorry, but I don’t owe anyone an explanation.   You know,  there are people that support you no matter what.  Because they love you and want the best for you.  And then there are the people that can only support you if they know all the details.  They have to be in the ‘know’.   That’s not how I roll.  I don’t need those kind of people in my life.  In my opinion, I told my small circle.  The important ones.  And that’s all I needed.  I didn’t need to tell the world.   I will only share my story if I want to.  Yes, I’m stubborn, in case you haven’t caught on by now 😜 

I loved it that I got to see all my people.  That’s what I call them, ‘my people’,  ‘My Sunday peeps’!  Ted had let everyone know that today was going to be my 1st day back and to my surprise, so many made an effort to come in and see me.   What a wonderful feeling.  It made my heart happy.  To know that so many people missed you while you were gone and are so very happy that you’re back and doing well.  I have such a wonderful relationship with soo many customers.   Well, how could I not?  I’ve been at that store for 17 1/2 years.   I know just about everyone.  They’re not customers anymore, they are family. . . .  and I love them 💕🤗

I had to have my wrist in my brace today.   It’s a good thing that I did.  Because it bothered me a lot.   I need my wrists’ to feel better, especially since I’m back at work.  I have a feeling that the repetitive motion that I do is going to be a nightmare.  I can already see being in constant pain with my right wrist.   Or just maybe 🤞  the motions will get all the fluid moving along and the pain will go away.   I can always hope.   

First day back =  success 🙂 

Seeing all my people ✔

Feeling great ✔

Making that money ✔

Today was a good day 😀

My first week back at work flew by!!!  I even went back to my training classes.  I missed doing that too.   Teaching new hires how to be cashiers.  Everything fell right into place.   I didn’t miss a beat.   Didn’t even seem like I had been gone at all.  Life is good. 

Dec 14 –  Today I had an appointment with my radiation oncologist.   Things look great!  I still have my burn annndddd it’s still super sensitive and very red.   I still wear sports bras a lot.  Those seem to help the best if you’re a breast/radiation patient.   I am still using that aquafor ointment daily, sometimes several times throughout the day for the irritation and itching.   It ITCHES like crazyyyy.  Today is exactly 1 month that I finished radiation.  So Overall, the doc is very pleased.  I graduated to 6 month check-ups.   Yay!!!

I haven’t forgotten.   Here is an update on my hair growth.  Yes, it is still going to be curly.   The back is starting to get out of control.  But in a good way.   And here they are. 

This is 19 weeks post chemotherapy 

Not bad.   I got a little spikey going on up top and a lot of curl starting to happen in the back.   My hair still feels super soft.  Like baby hair.   It’s perfect, undamaged hair.   I love it.  Let me tell you, getting ready in the mornings has never been so quick.  A little spritz and I’m all done.   

Dec 15 –  Today I got invited to go to CLNkids.  ‘Cuidando Los Ninos’.   It’s a shelter for homeless kids.  A group of coworkers always get together and take the kids treats, food, clothes, homemade lunch and since it’s Christmas time, they get presents and a visit from Santa!  What a wonderful time for them.   I had never been to one of these, but have been invited in the past.   I couldn’t tell you why I had never participated.  But I figured this would be good for me.  It was a new experience, to say the least.   


This little girl stole my heart.   If I was able to, I would have totally adopted her.   I would give her a home in an instant.   Her name is Savannah

  How happy they all were with their new teddy bears.   Something that they don’t have to share and is all theirs.  Something they can cuddle and sleep with.   They don’t know anything more than this.   Look at the way she is looking at her bear.  Such love. 

This was a humbling experience.   I will never forget this.   It made all my troubles and what I had been through disappear.   I see things through a new set of eyes ever since my ordeal.   And this got me in a way I wasn’t expecting.   “Lord, please watch over these children.   Keep them safe and warm.  And I pray that someday, they find a warm and loving place to call their home.” 😢💕


I can’t believe it is Christmas time.  The last couple of weeks have come and gone like a joke.  I have so much to be happy about.   Things are going well,  I feel great, now lets enjoy the holidays.   

I didn’t do any decorating like I usually do.    What I did was get us a little Charlie Brown Christmas tree.   I put it up, put a small string of lights on it, added a candy cane and viola, we have a Christmas tree.   It’s perfect.  Excuse the glare, it is right next to the window. 


I wasn’t up to decorating the house.  Not that I’m feeling like a humbug.   I just want something simple this year.   I don’t need all that extra stuff.  I just wanna be thankful that I made it through this horrible year.   All of that turmoil is behind me and I’m moving forward from here.   Remember, no looking in the rear view mirror. 

 I finally decided to post an updated picture of my hair on social media.   I really haven’t shared anything on there as far as putting selfies.  This will be the first selfie with my short hair.   I think from now on you can call me Curly Sue.  Sorry one of the pics came out blurry. 

21 weeks post chemotherapy 

I have itty bitty tiny bangs and a whole lotta curl 😀

Dec 31 –  Well, it’s time to wrap up this nightmare of a year.   

Gosh, looking back, I still can’t believe what I went through and the year I had.   This has been the worst year of my life and I can’t wait to kiss it goodbye.   

2017 holds so much fear, pain,  sadness, anxiety and challenges.   From diagnoses 10 months ago, it was one thing after another.   Everything happened so fast, I couldn’t even catch my breath.   I still remember them telling me,  “you’re going to have a long year”.   That was in February.  That thought alone scared the life right out of me.  Back then, I couldn’t even see myself in December.   I couldn’t see a day ahead of me because I had no idea what was in store.  It’s like you’re frozen in time, a horrible time and the hands on the clock don’t seem to move.  The days last forever and the nights don’t seem to come soon enough.   I went through everything imaginable.  I got thrown around (physically and mentally) like a little ragged doll.   Then came the end of treatment.   A time, I thought, when things were going to get sooo much better.   Everything is over now.  I can get back to ‘me’.   Instead, I was hit with such a horrible depression.   A depression sooo bad,  I wanted to end my life.  Instead of feeling happy and relieved, I was feeling down and lost, trapped and just wanted to slit my wrists’.    I was holding on by a thread.  My mental strength turned to pure mush.  I barley had the energy, let alone the will to make it through each day.   I felt hopeless.   Then there was the physical pain.   Good Lord, I had never felt this much pain and all over my body.   Things have to get better.   Things can’t stay like this.   I don’t wanna live like this.   I don’t wanna live at all.  Why do I feel this way?? 

 I can say goodbye.   I can say goodbye to all of that now.   What a relief.  I’m going to close that door.  Close that chapter of my life.  Seal it shut.  I NEVER wanna read it again.    Yes, my year was a long year.    Just like they said it would be.  But I would make it.    And I did.  That long year is over.  I can now kiss it goodbye.   Man, I can’t wait.  I have never wanted to see a new year like I do now.   I can’t wait for tomorrow.   I can’t wait for the clock to strike 12.   I wanna wake up to a new day, a new year and start all over, from scratch. 


This, , , , ,this is exactly how I feel about 2017.   F*ck you 🖕  I hated you  🤬  You were hard for me.  You sucked the life right out of me.  You almost broke me, almost,  but you didn’t.   I made it.  And now I want you to leave.  Adios!!  Get the hell outta here.   2018 is gonna treat me better and I’m going to feel better.  You’ll see.  I don’t ever wanna see you again!! 

hello 2018

I swear this is me.   I can see brighter days ahead. 



Hello 2018,  well don’t you look beautiful!!  I’ve been waiting for you and I am so glad that you are here. 

Learn from yesterday, Live for today and Hope for tomorrow!”


This is what last year taught me.   Now let’s move forward. 

Where do I begin?

  Oh yes, yes, we begin here.   


My story, I pray, will be so much better than the last.  Now let’s get 2018 and make the very best out of it.  I’m ready. 

 First hair pics of the year!!  

22 weeks post chemotherapy – almost exactly 5 months – progress

Get busy living or get busy dying” 

The Shawshank Redemption


Picking up the Pieces

Nov. 15th


Well. . . . today I was gonna try to start picking up the pieces of my scattered life.   That was my plan.  Unfortunatley,  late yesterday afternoon, I ended up in excruiating pain.  Good God!!  When will this ever end??   If it’s not one thing, it is always another  😢

After I rang that bell yesterday, I had lots of hope that my mind, body and soul were on the road to recovery.   I just new it had to get better.  Right?!?  Treatment is over.   I FINALLY got the ‘all clear’ signal,  I rang that bell that pretty much indicates you have been released from hell.  Life will be good.  I hope I can find all those scattered pieces of my life that have been strewn about the last 10 months.   I had that release of emotions that had been building up all this time.  I cried til I couldn’t cry anymore.  I was feeling good about things.  Things are gonna get better.  I just knew it.   

How foolish of me to think that. . . . . .

For out of the blue, I was hit with excrutiating back pain.  Oh my word, the pain is unbearable 😫  I’ve been here before.   I know this pain.   I know it all too well.  Especially this past year.   I have kidney stones. . . . .AGAIN!!!!   What the hell!!  Is it ever gonna stop?!  The physical pain that I have endured this whole year is like none I’ve ever had before.  It’s like a cycle.   It just keeps restarting over and over.  My body is tired.   My mind is tired.  My heart is tired.    Treatment wreaked havoc on my body and obviously, it still is.    I wonder if there will ever be an end in sight?   I wonder if I will ever have anything good and bright to share?   All I share is this horrible journey that has become my life.    This has to be like the 4th or 5th time I’ve gotten kidney stones since starting treatment.   Them suckers are so painful.   I guess all the excitement I had after ringing the bell triggered that little asshole to cause me pain.  And pain there was.   I can’t seem to catch a break.  I refused to go to the ER because there is absolutely nothing they can do but give pain meds and let it run it’s course.  Also. . . I didn’t feel like spending my whole night there.  Waiting.   When I could at least rest in my own bed and feel miserable without nurses constantly walking in on me. *sigh*

I took some of the pain killers 💊 that were given to me for my joint pain.  I threw those up 🤢 🤮 Took some more.   Threw those up as well 🤢  can’t keep anything down.   I won’t take anymore meds.   I’m too afraid.  I guess I’ll just deal with it.   Til the pain goes away. 

   I don’t wanna keep going through this.  I want things to start getting better.   I want my life back.  I want to enjoy things again.  I don’t want to always be in pain.   

My furbaby, Reggie, must’ve sensed my distress.   He laid with me,  curled up right next to my head.   He’s my therapy right now.   He keeps me calm.    Furbabies are the best 💕🐈🐾


Next morning – 

I’m doing better today.  So far, no pain.  I think Reggie feels relieved all my turmoil is over.  He’s been by my side.  He slept above my head on the pillow all night and now he’s laying right beside me.  

I still haven’t passed the kidney stone yet but I don’t have pain anymore.   I didn’t sleep well at all but. . . . today is a new day. 

 I’m gonna try harder to have calmer days.  I think I had that release I’ve been needing.  Maybe not all of that built up anguish came out,  but a lot did.  I hope it helps me.   Everyone tells me that things will get better.   I sure hope so.  I’m waiting patiently.   

Today is our Thanksgiving potluck at work.  I haven’t been there but was invited to come.  I thought today might have been stressful due to the night I had but it was actually a good day.   I  actually woke up wanting to do things.   Yay.   I made some treats to take to the potluck.   Crockpot candy.   mmmmm.  I’ve missed my work family.   I can’t wait to see them.    I also got to spend some time with Clara Sue.   That’s always a plus 😊 

Nov.  17th –   I was invited to help serve lunch at the elementary school that my son used to go to.  My friend, Christine,  thought that it would be a good idea.   Just to get me out of the house.  Because I had been feeling so down the past few months.  My wrists’ still hurt me a ton and I keep a brace on my right one, but I think I would enjoy it.   I love seeing all the little kids. I hope my energy holds up. 

 My wrists’ bothered me a whole bunch but I really enjoyed hanging out at the school with the kids.   Now that Dominic is in middle school, it’s not the same not having Thanksgiving lunch with him    I miss that.  Today turned out to be an okay day.   Even though I really enjoyed it, I went home very tired and here comes that sadness 😢

 I’m still somewhat locked in my own mind.


This picture ^ ^ ^ ^  SPEAKS VOLUMES to me!!!  I remember when this was me.   This IS me.  Locked in my mind.  A prisoner.   Not knowing how to escape.  Feeling exactly like this, but smiling and laughing around anyone else.   By myself, I’m a wreck,  but when I’m with you, you would never know the struggles that are going on within me. 

 Today it’s been a little over 2 weeks since I started on that medication for my PTSD and depression.  After hitting rock bottom, crying all the time, the anxiety and having suicidal thoughts, I had to do something or I was gonna end my life.  Gosh, things got sooo bad, mentally for me.   What a dark place I was in.  The darkest.  It was scary.  I thought for sure I would end things.  And I probably would have if I didn’t seek help.   I’m so glad I did.   And if YOU need to, please reach out and ask for help.   Depression/anxiety is a horrible illness and you are never alone.  Asking for help does not make you a weak person.   It makes you a strong one because you want to live your life happy and healthy. 

I am finally up to the full dose of the medication.  It should really start kicking in and working.    I had to start off with only a half of the dose, 25 mg and now I’m at 50mg.  I need mental relief.    I need to keep reminding myself that recovery is a slow process and I need to learn how to be patient.  





For those of you that are wondering, yes,  I am still keeping up with my hair regrowth progress.   Here are this weeks pics



15 weeks post chemotherapy

No curls yet.  Wonder if my hair will be curly like it was before?  I do have a bit of a wave in it.   So, I guess we’ll see.   I really don’t like the color that it’s taking on but hey, at least I have hair.   Exciting

 From my friend, Celina ❤❤


My wings are slowly starting to grow back.  Hopefully soon I’ll be gliding along with that gentle breeze. 

Nov. 19 –  I really hadn’t paid much attention, til I finally noticed. . . . I felt the breeze on my face.   I felt the sun on my skin.   I heard the birds singing.   Oh my, what a wonderful feeling.  I close my eyes and take it all in.  I hadn’t felt any of that in months.  I was so lost in my mental prison, my darkness, all that sadness and pain, that I forgot what all of that felt like.  It’s wonderful.   I’ve missed it.  Oh how I’ve missed it.  I hope things are starting to look up for me. 

Nov. 20th –  I can honestly say that my days are slowly starting to get brighter.   Can you believe I’m saying that?   I take my medication faithfully and yes,  it is helping.  One day at a time.   This past week had been good.  Every day gets better.   The days have been a bit chilly.  Today I made the first fire of the season in my woodstove.   And of course when there is a fire,  I had to put up some beef jerkey to dry. 

The pain in my knees and feet went away.   The tingling in my fingers is pretty much gone from the neuropathy.  And another thing I hadnt noticed til now,  my hot flashes are gone.  Remember I wrote about those?  Good Lord those were awful.  I always felt like I was melting and it seemed like it would happen all day long.  I can’t tell you how long its been since they’ve disappeared.   I had so many other things going on that I don’t even know when it stopped.   My body doesn’t hurt as much anymore.  I still have the pain in my wrists’.

 Nov.  22  –   What a beautiful November day!! 🍁🍂☀🍁


Hair progress.  I think I see a hint of some curl there in the back.   It is really starting to thicken up. 



16 weeks post chemotherapy 

 Nov. 23 – 


I have soo much to be thankful for.   I am here, I am alive and I am doing a lot better.   Thank you to all my friends and family that stayed by my side and fought this battle with me.  I love you all.  Thank you for being a part of my life. 

 Nov. 27  –  I am happy to report that I have been doing so good.  And the sun in my days has been shining bright ☀   My wrists’ still bother me a bunch, but can you believe that is my only gripe?   I went to the Dr and I have DeQuervain’s tenosynovitis in both wrists’.   It’s a form of severe tendonitis.  My thumb tendons at my wrists’ are so inflammed they have a popping/getting stuck feeling.  I may need injections.  I can’t believe how bad my joints, muscles and everything else got effected by treatment.  sheesh

I go back to work on Dec. 10.   I can’t believe it is time to go back.   My year drug yet it went so fast.   Only few would understand that.  I’m ready.  I think I’ve had enough time off to get myself somewhat of where I used to be, mentally and physically.   I’ve really missed being around everyone.  I’m going to start off slow at first and see how it goes.  I still have a lot of problems with my wrists’, but that is my only problem.  I have been waiting a long time to feel better.  And I finally do.   Not 100% , but a signifiant difference. 

 Weekly hair progress



17 weeks post chemotherapy 

l👀k at ALL that curl 😃  I think it is safe to say that my hair will still be curly.    Look at the way it is growing in!!  Of course, I don’t like all that gray but that can be taken care of.   I’m excited!   😁

My radiation burn is in full force.  Ouchie    My scars are healing  nicely.   My lymph node scar is very sensitive.   Especially since my radiation burn reaches that area.   I still put aquaphor ointment on several times, daily.   It helps with the itch and the overall burn.   Wearing a bra is almost impossible, so I have found that sports bras work best for me.  I know one day all of this will be a thing of the past but for now, I just do my very best. 

 I can’t believe Christmas is right around the corner.  I don’t know where Nov. went and Dec. has it’s foot on the gas pedal.  I almost can’t keep up.   Don’t think this bad of me, but I’m not really looking forward to Christmas.  I’m not a bah humbug, just not feeling it.  I just want to get through the rest of the year.  That’s all. 

 For the love of God!!  Can you believe I caught a cold?  The whole time that I was in treatment, not once did I get sick with a cold or any flu like symptoms.   Now that it is all said and done,  I get sick.   Just my luck.  Why do things happen that way?  And it’s a stubborn one.   It has me feeling groggy and tired.  Can someone come take care of me??

I go back to work in a few days.  I have been out since Aug 4.  4 months almost to the day.  I really needed that time off.   It was good for me.  But I really believe I am ready to go back to work.   To have a sense of normal back in my life.   I’ve missed everyone, especially my customers.   I’m not looking forward to all the questions of  ‘ why were you out of work?’ ,  ‘why is your hair short?’.   Things like that.   I am an EXTREMELY private person, unless I have talked to you about it, I don’t really feel like explaining to everyone that I have been fighting the good fight.   I just wanna go to work and work.   Don’t feel like talking about my struggles.  Honestly, I’m over it.  The subject is old.   I am cancer free and I want my days and conversations to be cancer free as well.  I’ve dealt and talked about it plenty this WHOLE year.   I don’t want to talk about it anymore, especially at work.   

Dec. 9th –  Tomorrow I go back to work.  EEEkk.  Sunday is my favorite day to work.   I’ll get to see all my Sunday peeps.  I’m excited about that.  I’m looking forward to it.   It’ll be  a good day.   Since I’m going back to work I wasnt going to go with all that gray in my hair, sooo, I colored it.  A soft auburn/brown color.  Now I’m ready!! 😀  Look out world.   Here I come!!


Ready to go back to work




Tomorrow I go back to work.   A new day.  New beginnings.  Starting over 🙂
















Lord, I hope this day is Good

Nov, 14 –

Graduation day!  Last radiation treatment 🙂 

 I started the day with a zillion thoughts buzzing around in my mind.  Today is my last treatment.  Today is the last day of my journey.  In the beginning, I thought this day would never come.  Here it is.  While I was going through everything, the days just drug on by.   Looking back, honestly, it flew.  We are in November.  Soon it’ll be Thanksgiving.   My mind and my soul have been reeling since Valentine’s.  I just need rest.  I need mental and emotional rest.   My soul needs peace.  The anticipation of what the day will bring has me on edge.   I am relieved, that when I walk out of there, I AM DONE.  But I have mixed emotions.   Naturally, I have anxiety but I’ve had that for weeks now.  I feel anxious, happy, sad, I feel trepidation.  My feelings are all over the place.  My mental pain is still lingering and I just wanna be done.  I hope today is a good day.   

This song has been playing in my mind.  A lot of it, is me and how I’ve been feeling lately.  Empty and misunderstood, although, I am grateful.  I just want today to be a good day. 



🎼🎶Lord, I hope this day is good.  I’m feeling empty and misunderstood.   I should be thankful, Lord I know I should but Lord, I hope this day is good. 

Lord, have you forgotten me?  I’ve been praying to you faithfully.   I’m not saying I’m a righteous man but Lord, I hope you understand. 

I don’t need fortune and I don’t need fame.  Send down the thunder Lord send down the rain. But when your planning  just how it will be, plan a good day for me. 

Lord, I hope this day is good.  I’m feeling empty and misunderstood.   I should be thankful, Lord I know I should, but Lord, I hope this day is good. 

You’ve been the King since the dawn of time.   All that I’m asking is a little less cryin.  It might be hard for the devil to do but it would be easy for you. 🎵🎶

 Lord, please just give me a good day.


Clara Sue came and picked me up.   I asked her to come with me today, since it’s my last time.  I wanted her to be there.  Here we go. 

When we got there, all the receptionists and nurses were excited for me.   “yay, last day!!”

 Sitting in the waiting area, I became friends with another patient receiving radiation.   She was older, maybe in her 70’s, great spirit.  We were always there at the same time and we’d sit and wait together til it was our turn.  She was happy for me. We talked about life after radiation.   I was getting more and more anxious.  I get called back.   Eeek , It’s time. 

This is the last time I’ll have to get in this thing.  


You can see the lazers as they line me up.  I’ve had great doctors.  That’s so important in a journey like this one.  You see them everyday, so they become a part of your routine. 

One of my wrists’ is in a brace.  They hurt so bad.   My whole body hurts with pain. I hope all of this goes away once I’m done.  I miss the ‘me’ that felt good.  The one that was happy all the time and never complained about pain. I’ve missed her a lot. I hope she comes back and that she’s not gone forever. Cuz, I’m not sure I can handle this new normal that has become my life.  I hate it.  I just don’t feel good, inside or out.  And I feel it from head to toe. 

A few minutes later.  All done. yes!!  We walk out to the hallway.  It’s time to ring my last bell.  Treatment is all over.  I made it.   I can feel a ball in my throat.  I’m getting choked up.   I started to get emotional as I went to go change.  Jill was still waiting, the other patient I bacame friends with.  We hugged and wished each other well.  I started to cry.  Something that didn’t happen the last time. 

It’s time. My doctors are with me.  I’m ready.   *ringing the bell*  last teatment.  I did so much better this time. 


Like the doctor said, “keep moving forward, no looking in the rearview mirror”  Nope, not a chance, no looking back.   Time to go forward.   This journey took 9 months and 1 day.   I could’ve had a baby in the time.  I would have much rather of had a baby.  This was rough and it still is.   There went my whole year and I thought 2017 was gonna be a good one.  It was my worst.

Let’s go.  I’m ready to leave.  But first, there is something that I need to do.  I asked Clara Sue if she would come with me to the infusion center on the other side from where we were.   I need to do something and I want her to be there.  As we walked in, I met up with my oncology nurses that I had during chemo.  Yay, celebration talks and congratulations.  I found Sara.  Sara was my main oncology nurse.   We ended up connecting so well during my infusions.  My very first day of chemo, I was frightened, anxious, nervous.  The unknown is very scary.  She had something for me.  A necklace, from a survivor.  She was instructed to give it the next one who came in for treatment for breast cancer.   It was me.   She gave it to me.  Along with hope to never give up.  That stayed with me throughout my journey.  A little hope can go a long way.  I wanted to do just the same.  We need to build each other up and become each others strength.  Whether we know one another or not.   I never knew this lady, didn’t even know her name.  but it touched me.  I want to continue that.   I am passing hope and strength forward.  To give the next one who comes in, the encouragement she needs to put up a good fight.   This is my gift to her. 

 “Fight hard and don’t ever give up”


Together ‘WE’ can make a difference. 

 As we walked out, my emotions were bubbling to the surface.  It felt that at any moment they were about to explode.   I didn’t feel this when I finished chemo.   Honestly, I felt nothing.  I felt numb, turned off.  Robotic, almost.  Just going through the motions.   This time was different.   This time it needed to come out.   That wall of built up feelings started to crumble and it wasn’t long til it came crashing down.   That dam broke.  All those feelings from the past 10 months came bursting out.  This is the release that I had been needing for soo long.  I bawled my heart out.  The floodgates opened up and out came all my fears, my anguish, the hurt, the pain. I finally let it all out.  I finally allowed myself to cry and to feel everything.  I cried the rest of the afternoon.  It was nonstop.  So much needed to be released.  I had to let it go.  I had to get it out of my system. It was just there, festering, making me miserable, making my chest feel so heavy, so heavy that it felt like I couldn’t breathe.  Guess what,  I was able to breathe,  I was finally able to take in that deep breathe and let it back out.  Oh how I needed to let go of the fear and the anguish.  All this time I wasn’t able to get that release.  Today, I finally got it.  I finally let all those feelings that I’ve been pushing down, out.  I acknowledge it all. I faced it.  I finally let it go.  I felt so much better, on the inside.   My  soul felt relieved. 

By the end of the day, I was emotionally exhausted.  But now, I can finally say, ” I am officially free and clear”  Oh my goodness!!  Free and clear.   What wonderful words. 

I am mentally and emotionally worn out.  Exhausted.   But my soul feels relief.  I can move on now.  I can gather the scattered leaves of my life and try to put them back together.  I hope I can.  I hope that now, my mind and my soul will be released from that prison they’ve been entangled in.  


I hope




Lord,  thank you for giving me a good day.  That’s all I asked for. 



Tomorrow, I start picking up the pieces






Falling Apart

Sept 1 – Surgery Day, afternoon – 

My eyes fluttered open to a nurse shoving ice chips in my mouth.   I was so out of it. How I had the ability to chew and swallow them was amazing.  Things were so out of focus and my eyes were still heavy.   He was talking to me but what he said, I couldn’t even tell you.   He was speaking to deaf ears.  I was in the recovery room.   hmmm, surgery must already be over.   He continued to give me ice chips.   They tasted good,  soothing.  No one else was in there with us.   Where is Clara Sue?   Where is my brother?   I’m sooo sleepy.   I started to slowly comprehend the things that he was telling me.   Surgery went well.  As I started to come out of it more and fully wake up, I was hit with an enormous amount of pain.   It felt like I was catapulted right into a brick wall at full speed.



The pain set in horribly.   I hurt sooo bad.   I guess the anesthesia wore off.   Here come the shakes.   When I’m in a lot of pain, my body starts to shake.   My chest was wrapped so tightly it felt hard to breathe.   They put me in like this tube top with velcro and they had it as tight as it would go.   The nurse asked if I would like some pain medicine.   Yes!!   Of course.    He gave me 2 vicodin.   It was 3:30.   He went out to get Clara Sue, she can sit in here with me now.   O-M-GEEEEEE!!!   The pain is off the charts.   The nurse brings her in.   She can tell I’m in a ton of pain, she doesn’t say a word.  She sits in the chair next to my bed.   My shakes are horrible.    I feel like hell.  Most of my wires were already disconnected and the massaging leg warmers were off.   Just my vitals were being checked regularly.   About another hour and maybe I’ll get to go home, as long as I’m feeling okay. 

 I was able to talk without sounding like I was blabbering.   I asked Clara Sue to check on Dominic to make sure he is okay.   He is already out of school by now and I’m not home yet.   I don’t want him to worry.  The surgeon comes in and explains to us that everything went very well.  She was pleased.  She got EVERYTHING out!   She also explained that she was able to pull out my chest port thru one of the incisions, so I didn’t need that 4th surgery.   Thank God.    I’m gonna look like Edward Scissorhands got a hold of me.   My chest will need to stay tightly wrapped (compressed) for the next few days.  This will help with any pain and discomfort.   She wrote me out a prescription for a pain killer for when I get discharged.   Another medication to add to my growing personal pharmacy.   I’m ready to leave, I’ve had a long day. 

 I look at my cell phone, wow, I have a lot of messages.   I need to call Dominic so he knows that I’m okay.  My brother Jake couldn’t make it, he got stuck in Santa Rosa. 

 4:08 still in recovery and lots of pain.  The ice chips help.  I think I’m finally coherent.  I’ll get to leave soon as long as I am able to stand on my own.   I change back into my clothes.  That took me like forever.   Being wrapped and bandaged made it a little rough.   Right now you can’t see anything, it’s all hidden behind the dressings.   That pain hasn’t subsided but I wanna leave already. 

 5:00 – getting discharged.  Going home now.   Pain is horrible. 😖  I still feel pretty loopy 😩 I needed help getting into the car.   I felt so dizzy.   I’m so glad this part is over.   Now to rest and recover.   I’m starving, I need something to eat.   It’s dinnertime and I haven’t even had breakfast.  Clara Sue stops to get me a sandwich from arby’s.   Now headed home.    Oh gosh, here comes the nausea.   This always happens to me with anesthisia.   I need to throw up. 🤢  My head starts pounding.  I feel like shit.  We’re almost home.   I asked Brittany to come stay with me the rest of the evening just in case I needed some help with anything.   So she showed up shortly after we got there.  I needed help to get out of the car and to walk inside.   I was swaying like a drunk person.   As soon as I walked in the door I had to high tail it to the bathroom to blow chunks.  😝 It never fails.  My stomach was so upset but I felt so much better once I got all that shit out of my system.   What a relief.    I just have pain and lots of it.    Guess I’ll eat my samich, the pain meds might work better with something in my stomach.   Clara Sue left and I just hung around with Brittany, watched a movie and rested.  My nephew, Yaz, came to keep Dominic company.   By around 8 ‘clock, I felt so much better.   All that loopiness went away.  I no longer felt nauseas and I was back to my joking self.   Later in the night, I felt Brittany didn’t need to stay over, so she left and so did my nephew.  I’m sooooo ready for bed.  My day has been way too long.  Trying to change into jammies was like a marathon but I did it.   Trying to get comfortable and get some sleep was even harder.    Couldn’t sleep on my right because of surgery, couldn’t sleep on my left side for the same reason, I couldn’t even sleep on my tummy and laying on my back is not comfortable.  I couldnt sleep for the life of me.   The surgery meds along with my 80’s like velcro tube top that looked like it was sprayed on, made it impossible to sleep.   I was wide awake but without pain. 

 Next morning –  I woke up feeling pretty good even though I got no sleep.   But has far as how I felt physically, not bad at all.   I didn’t have to take any pain meds so I guess I’m handling it like a champ.  I’m just a tad bit sore.  I decided to finally make my brother some cookies.   The ones I was going to make him for his birthday but I never did due to all the physical pain I had been in.   So far, all that pain that I had been complaining about for like the past month was gone.  I hope it’s gone forever.   Honestly, I felt pretty good.  Today was a good day. 

 Sept. 3 –  Well, it is safe to say that all of my eyebrows and eyelashes have faithfully departed.  It makes my eyes always look red and if I’ve been crying non stop.  Like my hair, I can’t wait for it all to grow back.   I’ve even missed my nose hairs.  My nostrils always feel raw.  Oh the joys of being a cancer patient.   As for day 2 of surgery – –  1. I actually slept pretty good, I needed that.  2.  holy hell, I don’t think I have ever been so sore in my life.   I can’t move at all.   My boobs feel like I have a set of rocks.   The range of motion for my arms is minimal.  Today is for sure a yucky day.   Out of curiosity I unwrapped myself from my oh so sexy tube top to inspect my girls.    Ouch I look like I’ve been beat up and mutilated.  


I have to leave the bandages on for a few more days.   The stitches will dissolve on their own.   The bandage under my armpit is my lymph node incision.  Round 2 all over with.   Just need to complete the 3rd hurdle (radiation)  and I’ll be home free.  For now I get to deal with all this soreness and boobs that feel like rocks. 

 I never did believe in chemo brain until I got my dose of it.   It’s horrible.   I can’t remember something you just told me 5 minutes ago.  Staying focused and even concentrating is getting hard.    It seems like my mind is always blank.  Especially when I’m asked something quickly.  It’s like “huh?”    I hope the brain recovers with everything else.   I don’t need to be spacey all the time.   Well, I guess I get to take it easy for the rest of Sept.   I have a follow up with the surgeon on the 11th and that’s all.   So, it’s R & R and see if I can slowly get to ‘me’.   I haven’t been bothered by my aches and pains, so maybe the surgery had something to do with that.   Who knows.  I hope they don’t return.   Now, I just have to wait 4-6 weeks before I can start radiation and then I can truly say this nightmare is over.    Can’t wait.    2 hurdles down, 1 more to go.   

Sept 4 – 



This pic is 1 month and 1 day post chemotherapy.     

If you look closey, you can see my fuzzies growing.  It makes my face look chubby, not having any hair.   I will try my best to post weekly pics of the growth progress.   As you can see my eyelashes are GONE  and so are my eyebrows.   These ones are drawn in and I hate them.  I think they’re lop-sided haha.   So glad it’s only temporary.   Today my boobs are still swollen and they feel heavy.   But each day that goes by is another day closer to feeling better. 

 Sept 8 – I don’t know what came over me, but I have really been missing my Pops terribly these past few days. 😢  I have cried nonstop for like 3 days straight 😭 It’s like I’ve lost him all over again.   I miss him so much.   The sadness is overwhelming.   I think everything is throwing my emotions for a loop.  I can’t stop crying.   I just need a hug from you and to hear your voice again.   I feel like I’m falling apart.  My heart is broken. 💔 He was my best friend and I miss him dearly.   

My cousin Irene brought me these and hooked them up for me.   She knows that I’ve been feeling down and figured it would cheer me up.   It did.   It’s so soothing, the way they flicker and dance around.   I just sit or lay on my swing and watch them.   It’s relaxing.   She also hooked me up some outdoor misters that way I can stay cool when I’m out on the swing.   They feel wonderful.   Ahhhhhh     All this eases my sad heart a bit



 I hate that I can’t get in the pool.   I need to wait for my incisions to heal.   The one incision under my armpit gives me the most grief.   I don’t have any pain but I really am sore.   I miss relaxing in the pool.   At least my neice and my son get to enjoy it.   It is really hot and my hot flashes are still severe.  I wonder when those will go away?    They have been so brutal.   I thought they would be gone by now.  I can’t wait for cooler weather. 


Sept 9 –  *GASP*  my eyebrows are growing back and I think I spot a hint of tiny eyelashes.   Yay!!!!!!!!   This is so exciting, you don’t even know.   

Well my physical aches and pains are back and they are horrible!   When will all of this end?  I see my primary Dr at the end of the month.   Maybe she can tell me what’s going on with me.   On a better note, my energy is slowly starting to come back and I don’t feel that fatigue like before.   Still, even now,  there is good and there is bad.   Can’t wait till there is more good than bad. 

 Sept 11 –  I just got the best news EVER!!!!!!!!   Got that phone call from my surgeon.   All of my margins are free and clear.   Thank you Jesus!   No more cancer!   It IS all gone!!!! 😄😄   Wow what a relief.  I just needed to cry, cry tears of joy.   She sent in like 12 different tissue samples from my surgery and all came back negative.   Oh I can’t explain what I’m feeling right now.    I can officially say I’m free and clear but I want to wait until radiation is over and done with.   Radiation is just a precaution.   YAY!!!!!!!!!    I.AM.SOOOOOOOOO.HAPPY!!!!!!!! 😄🤗     I slowly started to let everyone know.   Maybe now everything will fall back into place.   Maybe I’ll feel better knowing I don’t have that monster in me anymore.   Maybe this will be the day that things turn around for me.   I sure hope so.   

  I slacked off last week with a pic but here’s this one.  Look at my hair!  I actually have a hairline!  OMG  and look. . . . I have eyebrows and itty bitty lashes.  I look gross cuz this is the plain ole me but I can’t tell you how excited I am.   Oh the little things you don’t ever think about until you don’t have them.   I’m so happy to have eyebrows  haha


Sept 19 – A hairline and eyebrows! 


Sept 22 –  fuller eyebrows and more lashes.  I can actually get a bit of mascara on them 🙂    This is just 3 days from the last pic.  My hair is growing in grey, gross.   I think I need a date with L’oreal soon.   Can’t tell yet if my hair will still be curly or if it will come in different.   I’ve heard many different stories on the regrowth of hair.   Who cares?   As long as I have some!!! 


This is my new hairbrush.   Its cute, isn’t it?   Can you believe it’s been 7 months since my diagnosis?   Yes 7.   I can’t believe it.   I can’t believe everything I’ve been through.   I have the scars and all the pain but it still just doesn’t seem real.   I guess you never know how you’re going to handle things until you’re faced with it.  I can do this. 


Things were going so well. . .  and then we lost our beloved furbaby, Riley.   


Collage 2017-09-23 12_46_31

This broke me.   I’ve been trying to stay strong for so long, but this broke me.   It shattered my heart.   My mental strength turned into pure mush.    What’s happening??   I cry ALL THE TIME.    


I’m falling apart at the seams. . . slipping away





The leap of Faith

Aug. 4  

Day after my last chemo.  Believe it or not I slept very well last night.   Today is my official last day of work for a while.   I only need to put in a few hours than I can take my time off and concentrate on me.   I need rest and lots of it.  I feel like I need to go into hibernation.   I’ve been running on fumes these past months and I really need a break. 

My day at work flew by and it was over before I knew it.   I felt some relief when I clocked out and left.   No one at work really knows that I’ll be out.   I’ve told a few that I’m taking vacation but they think it’s only for a week.   After work I left and went to the district office to submit the rest of my paperwork.   I have no idea how all of this is even going to turn out.    I don’t know if my time off will be approved.   I don’t know how things are going to be financially.   I don’t know how my results are going to turn out when I do my MRI or how surgery is going to be.  I don’t know anything at this point.   So, I’m taking the leap of faith.   I’m putting it all in Gods hands once again.   I’m one of those persons that has always said,  “things will turn out as they should.”   I suppose they will, even this time.   They always have in the past.   I stress out about it for awhile but in time it always turns out how it should have.  I’m putting all my eggs in one basket,  So I hope and pray it turns out for the best. 


What a relief to be out of work!!  Mentally and physically. . . phew  


Looking back at how I did things,  I’m so glad I did it the way I did.  Keeping my circle (support system) small.  Waiting to tell everyone was the best thing for me.   Some people may not agree with that and that’s okay but it was MY choice.   It was my choice to deal with it privately.   Everyone has a choice and this was mine.   I didn’t have that added stress of different opinions.  I was able to deal with it peacefully.   Not gonna say it wasn’t stressful trying to keep my life as normal as possible and I’m not gonna say the rest of my people wouldn’t have been supportive, because they have.  But. . . . I’ve had a couple of people say that I shouldn’t have gone through chemotherapy.  I’ve also had some tell me not to go through radiation, it’s the worst thing for me.   Try taking this or drink that.   Don’t eat this anymore.  Take better care of yourself.  WHAT THE HECK?!?!?!  😠   Let me be.   Let me do what I  think is best for me.  What my medical team says is best for me.   If it’s going to save my life than I’m all for it.   Still, I don’t like what I’ve had to go through or what I still need to go through,  but like I said before,   my life and my son are worth all the hell I’ve had to endure.  What worked for someone else may not work for me.   This is what I didn’t want to deal with.  This was the reason I wanted privacy.   I did’t want that added stress.   I wanted peace and I still want that.   Please respect that.   Unless I share it with you,  I don’t wanna talk about it.   Yes, ask me how I’m doing,  I’ll tell you and if I want to share more, I will.   Besides, I AM sharing it all with you.  right here, right now.  I am telling you how I’m doing and how I feel.  This is my sharing spot, my therapy, my release.   In person or anytime,  I want things to be as normal as possible.  Don’t treat me like I’m fragile, I won’t break.   I’m still silly ole me 😜 with a great big heart ❤ and one that is OH SOOOOO HAPPY  that I’m DONE with chemotherapy!!!    ahhhhhhhh     The relief mentally feels amazing!!!  😃  I CAN’T WAIT to physically start feeling better.   Hopefully a week from now when my body realizes it is no longer getting pumped with poison, things will go back to normal.  I’ll start feeling better, sleeping better, being able to taste my food.   Soon I hope my mouth sores go away.  It’s been almost 8 weeks straight that I’ve had those 😩.  I haven’t lost anymore weight.  It is holding steady.   But all together, I lost 17 pounds.   I can’t wait to have my energy and my strength back and to be able to do things without getting breathless and worn out.   I can’t wait to take vitamins!!!  I have’t been allowed to have those during chemo. 

 There are sooo many things that I can’t wait for!!! 


 Monday, Aug 7 – MRI 

 Today I go in for my ultrasound and MRI.   Gonna check to see if the chemo zapped it completely.  I sure hope it did and they don’t see anymore cancer.   My oncologist no longer feels a lump but there could be minute cancer cells left over. 

 (praying 🙏) 

MaryBeth is here with me today.   The support she has given me is amazing.  It’s like having a sister.  It’s wonderful!    I change and wait to be seen and watch as MaryBeth works on a blanket.  She’s GREAT at making blankets and quilts, that’s her hobby.   We talk like if we’re not even waiting at a Dr’s office.   I don’t feel nervous or anxious but we’ll see how I feel when I get called in. 

Time for the ultrasound 

I get the same tech that I got back in February at the beginning of all of this.   I really like her.   She begins her procedure.   The ultrasound wand doesn’t hurt like before when she puts pressure.   There is no pain at all.  That’s a good indication.  Before it used to hurt SOOO bad.   She carefully goes over the area.  I hadn’t looked at the monitor at all until she mentioned she couldn’t see anything.   The last time, the image scared me, so I was afraid to look.   So, when I finally did take a look at the monitor the only thing you could see, barely, was the tiny titanium clip they had inserted months ago for my biopsy.   The mass from before wasn’t there.   She called in the doctor to take a look at it and confirm,  it was all clear.   No signs at all of cancer.     YESSSSS!!!!!!   

Even though the ultrasound produced no signs of cancer, I still need to be seen for an MRI.  They want to be sure.  They want a more closer, detailed imagery before they give me the green light.  So, here I go to get prepped for the MRI.   Back into the noisy machine I go.   This time they have me in a really awkward position and it’s really cold in here.   Oh well, whatever it takes.  It’ll be about 15 minutes. . . . . . . . . .

All done.  They send me back out to a room to wait for the doctor with results.  I asked them to call in MaryBeth so she can be with me when I get my results.   After a few moments, the doctor comes in and also the ultrasound tech.   He gives me my results.   ( deep breath )   The MRI didn’t detect anything.   It was all clear.   There were no visible signs of cancer cells.   He began to tell me that I had responded very well to the chemotherapy treatment and that it did what it was supposed to do.  It was gone.   The only thing that they could see was the clip.  I started to tear up.   With a knot in my throat I asked him,  “So, there is nothing there?  It’s all gone?”  Him – “Yes, it’s all gone”.    Me, choked up – “Really?  you don’t know how long I’ve been needing good news.”   Him –  “yes, I know.   Congratulations.”   (he was the one who did my MRI in the beginning when I first got my news, so he knows)  Me – “Thank you, I needed this.”     Him ( handing me kleenex ) –  “good luck with the rest of your journey.” 

They left the room to give me a moment.   MaryBeth hugged me and I started crying.   I needed this.   I got good news,  I really got good news.   After a few minutes, I changed and we left.  As we were walking out, one of the receptionists that I have come to know, asked how it went.    I gave her a thumbs up and told her, “good news”   She came over to give me a hug and wish me the best of luck.   MaryBeth and I started to leave but we ended up sitting in the lobby for a good while absorbing my good news.   She was in tears.   She was very happy for me but I think at the same time she was heartbroken.   This was bittersweet for her.    She lost one of her sisters to breast cancer.  The very same kind that I had.   She went through all of her treatments but didn’t get the ‘good news’ in the end.   So, this hit home for her.  It opened and old wound that didn’t have a good ending.   So, she was very happy, yet very sad.  We talked for a good while longer.   A part of me was in disbelief.   I have been so scared for months, it was hard for me to be happy.  Yes, don’t get me wrong, I was happy but I had a very hard time expressing it and feeling it.   Is that weird?   Is it even normal?   Even though I had tears in my eyes it felt like my emotions, my feelings, were shut off.   I’m not sure what I feel.  We hugged, walked out to the parking lot and got in our separate vehicles.  We didn’t come together. 

  So, here I am, once again, sitting in my car.   This time with the news that my cancer is gone.   It is really gone.  I am trying really hard to absorb this good news.   6 months ago,  I was sitting here, in my car trying to come to terms with the diagnoses they had just given me.   How crazy and unpredictable life can be.  Cherish it always.  The good, the bad and even the horrible. 

 I got home and one by one started telling my loved ones.  I didn’t make this public, I only told my circle.   Oddly, as much as I wanted to, I couldn’t get excited about it.   I should be doing cartwheels and jumping for joy.   Instead, I feel numb.  There is no excitement in me.  I think I’m afraid to be happy.  I’m afraid to feel happy for fear of jinxing it.   For fear of being let down.   That’s the best I can explain it.  Maybe it hasn’t hit me yet.  Maybe when Dominic gets home from school and I tell him my good news, I’ll feel this excitement.   I know he’ll be happy.  But why does it all seem like a blur?  Why does it seem like I just woke up from a horrible nightmare and the past months never happened?   How come I feel this way?   Looking back, none of it seems true.   I don’t know what’s going on.   My heart and my mind are at an impass.   They are not connecting. 

 Later that evening, I text MaryBeth,  “did today really happen?  Did I really get that good news I’ve been waiting for?”   Her – “Yes, it’s true, it happened.”   How come I don’t feel it?  How come I’m not as happy as everyone else, that I’ve told, is?   I hope the Good Lord doesn’t think I’m being ungrateful.   Because I’m not, I am grateful.  I’m glad to be at this point.   My son was relieved and happy.  It’s been hard for him too.    I just feel disconnected.    It hasn’t sunk in.   

 I’m having some hard days.  Saturday, 2 days after my last chemo, I felt great.   Yesterday and today, my body hurts.  It feels heavy.   There’s a heaviness.   I almost feel depressed, even with the good news I just received.   Yesterday I was sooo tired, I layed around all day.   I’m having such a hard time wrapping my mind around all the events that have happened.   I’m trying to be happy,  I am thankful but it’s hard to come off of months of chemo, get good news and try to get back to a normal life.   I’ve had highs and lows all week.   I wonder if other women feel this way??  Tammy says this is exactly how she felt.   It’s just a combination of everything.   No one realizes just how much the effects of chemo have on our bodies.  It is literally poison that helps to kill the cancer.   I think my mind and my body are just so tired,  exhausted from everything.    I should be ecstatic.  I’ve finished chemo and I am still alive.   Instead I feel down and my body hurts.  My emotions are all over the place.   I cried in the doctors office and came home as if nothing even happened.    I’ve been waiting for that deep exhale, that release.   It hasn’t happened.  I feel that when it does, I’m just gonna have a breakdown.  I really need that good cry out.  I’m just having a hard time.   When will everything go back to normal?  

My surgery consult is scheduled for next week. 

 Even though my ultrasound and MRI showed nothing, I still need to go in for surgery to remove (scrape out) any remaining debris and the ’tissue bed’ where the lump was.   It needs to be tested for any lingering cancer cells that weren’t caught by the chemo, if any.   

Aug 11 –  Today has been 1 week and 1 day post chemotherapy.  I’m hoping that once my body realizes it won’t be getting hacked anymore, things will get better.   My veins are gonna feel relief that they don’t have to get poked anymore.  This will be the first week since March that they don’t get poked on a weekly basis.   My arms can heal.  I look like a druggie 😜💉  My hair will start to grow from this peach fuzz.  I’ve lost my eyebrows 😢 and my eyelashes are thinning badly.  This for me is very upsetting.   I don’t like it  *sigh*  I still have mouth sores and my feet are still tingly.   The hot flashes are still brutal for me.  I can’t wait for the weather to cool down.  I love fall.   Soon, I hope, all of that will be a thing of the past. 

 I got this pain in my left knee, right at the bend.   I’m not sure what brought it on.  Maybe I tweaked my knee or something.   It hurts a bit.   I’m sure it’ll go away.   

On a brighter note,  my time off from work got approved.  Yes!!  That is a relief.   It got approved til Nov. 1.   That will give me enough time to get through surgery and radiation.   Also, my bank is gonna bend a little with my finances.   Phew!  Oh and I can finally start taking vitamins!!!   woo hoo.  You know how excited that makes me?  I can start building up my energy.   My body has been so deprived. 

I registered my son this week for school.   I officially have an 8th grader!  He starts next Monday.    I’m so hurt our summer was robbed and we didn’t get to do anything.  I always felt like shit and worn out.   I’m not ready for him to go back to school and neither is he.   I get time off and he goes back.   Not fair.   

Aug 14 – My son goes back to school  ☹  and I will be all by myself.   I guess I’ll just rest up.   This pain in my knee has not gone away.   I wonder what I did to it?  I can’t bend it or try to get down on it.  It hurts.  I love to sit like a little girl, in a pretzel or bring my knees up to my chest.   I can’t do that anymore and I can’t tuck that leg under me.   hmmmm. . . what the heck?!?! 

Tuesday – This pain in my knee is not getting better.   I’m starting to limp on it when I walk and it hurts me most in the morning when I get out of bed.  Did I twist it?  Or am I getting arthritis in it?  I think I’m starting to feel it in my other knee as well.  What is going on? 

I’m starting to feel achy throughout my body.  I think my body is just sooo tired from being attacked.   I’m starting to feel all the aches now.   My ankles hurt, the bottoms of my feet hurt, especially in the morning.  That’s when it’s the worst.  By the afternoon, after my body has warmed up, it mostly goes away.   I walk my son to the bus stop in the morning and again in the afternoon I wait for him, so I am getting exercise.   It’s that morning walk that’s hard for me. 

My older brother Jake came over to help me clean up some of the yard.   I haven’t worked out in the yard this year but a bit here n there.   It’s thrashed.  Everything is so overgrown and bushy.   It looks horrible and I don’t like it.   Now that chemo is over and I start getting energy, I want to clean the yard, get rid of shit and also attack my house.   We spent 2 days cleaning some of it but I have such a big yard, it’s gonna take a few more days.  We pruned, raked, cut down branches, threw away trash and old stuff, you name it.   I tried my best to help as much as I could but my energy level still isn’t there.   I got tired very easily and it is really hot out.   We didn’t finish but we put in a good dent.   I’ll get to the rest of it when I can. 

 The following day, I almost couldn’t move.   My hands hurt.   It must be from the pruning and the shovel.   It doesn’t help that I have pain in my knees and it seems to be spreading.   I knew this would make me more sore but I wanted to get it done.   It’s my fault.  My body isn’t ready for this kind of work but I wanna get it done.  I have a bad habit of pushing myself way too hard.    I really paid for it.   

Aug 18th – Surgery consult

Clara Sue and I come for my surgery consult.   It has been nice not having to come up here for a couple of weeks.  The doctor does a breast exam.  Then, she goes over my ultrasound and MRI images.   She is very pleased with what she sees.   So, she went on to explain the surgery I will need.   Since I was negative on the genetic test that I had taken in February, I get to keep my boobs.  I do not need to have them removed.  However,  I will need surgery on the right breast to remove any remaining debris.   I will also need surgery on my left breast as well.   WHAT???   WHY???   When they did the 2nd biopsy in the beginning, I was told I didn’t have anything to worry about.   I didn’t need to worry because that shaded area they had tested was benign.  I have a very tiny benign lump on my left breast.  I did not know this.   She wants to have it removed because over time it could change from a benign lump to a malignant one.   Wow.   She is also going to remove a couple of lymph nodes from under my right armpit.  She needs to remove the Sentinel and axillary nodes (3).   They don’t have cancer but she wants to remove them.  Okay, so that is 3 surgeries all at once.   Not what I was expecting at all.   We start setting it up.  She is NOT pleased that it took so long for me to be seen by her.   That is how I was scheduled.  She said they screwed up and I should have been in sooner and my surgery already scheduled.   There is a timeline that they like to follow and I was already beyond that.   I should be having surgery now and because of this delay and her upcoming vacation, she can’t get me in until Sept 22.    *gulp*   what?  That’s a month away.  I don’t want to wait that long.   Honestly, I’m afraid to wait that long.  I don’t like this.   I asked her if it was dangerous for me to wait that long.   She didn’t like it either.   She asked if I would like to be seen by another surgeon who could possibly get me in sooner.   I didn’t know this other surgeon.   I really like the one I have now.  She’s been with me from the beginning but she did say that if she was having surgery, she would want her to do it.    That made me feel better and I agreed.   The doctor would be on vacation for 2 weeks and she didn’t have an opening in the ER till Sept 22.   Also, that is the anniversary of the day I lost my Mom.   I DID NOT want to be in surgery on that day.  So, she set me up to see the other surgeon.   I see her on Monday.   Because of this delay,  I have to wait 4-6 weeks before I can do radiation and I’ll probably have 4 weeks of that.   So, we’re looking at almost Thanksgiving or Dec before I’m all done.   *sigh*   They weren’t lying when they initially told me I would have a long year. 

Aug 20 – I really need to get out of dodge.  So, I was happy when my brother and I decided to go to the ranch.   We have a ranch in Ponderosa.  It’s in Northern New Mexico.   My Dad is from there.  Someday, we’d like to build a cabin up there and have it as a getaway whenever needed.   There is nothing like the mountains.   I have so been needing fresh, mountain air and to get away from the city.   I think it would do my son and I some good.   To break away from the daily routine and a change of scenery. 

 It’s beautiful here.  *inhaling*  ahhh,  smell that.  No pollution at all.  It smells clean, fresh and inviting.  It’s a bit chilly but warm at the same time, if that makes any sense.   We took us a nice good walk around the mountain and contemplated where and how we would like to do things when we start.   Some of the fence around the property was a bit damaged where the elk try to run through.  We wanna put up a pipe fence.  I haven’t been up here in a long time and I have really missed it.   It’s super peaceful and relaxing. 





 Dominic really enjoyed it and says, “Gosh it is so beautiful here!   How come we don’t come here more often? I love it here.”  I felt guilty.   Other than my current situation, I didn’t have a good answer for him.   We had packed some food to have a picnic out in the wilderness.  It was wonderful!!  I can’t wait to have a place up here to come to.  Surprisingly,  I was able to do a good walk up and around the mountain.   There is a portion (not pictured) that has a pretty good incline.    That was hard for me but I did it.   My aches and pains don’t make it any easier but I feel I have a bit more energy, not much.   I didn’t feel like I needed to pass out but I did need to go at it slow.   We spent a few more hours there then packed it up and came home.   I can’t wait to go back but I wanna be done with everything before I do.    Back to the city.    I really needed to get away even if it was just for a day. 

Monday 21st – My aches and pains are getting worse.   Maybe I over did it with the yard and all the walking I did yesterday.   Can’t worry about that now I have an appointment with the other surgeon.   I didn’t ask anyone to come with me today, so this will be the 1st appt I have been to by myself since Feb.  I’ll be alright.   I am a bit nervous.   The new surgeon comes in.   She is very nice.   I like her a lot.   She goes over all of my information and my images and what my other surgeon had in her notes.  She really explained the surgery to me in great detail and I got a better understanding of what to expect.   She looked at her O.R. schedule and has an opening on Sept. 1, if I’m interested.  I don’t know anything about her but I really like her.  I got a good vibe from her.   Surgery would be next Friday,  eek.   I take another leap of faith and agree to switch over with her.    I get scheduled for Friday, Sept 1.   for a partial mastectomy (lumpectomy)  of my right breast, surgery on my left, my lymph nodes and to have my chest port taken out.   Yay!!!   I finally get to have that chest port out.   I’m gonna look like a mummy after I’m done with that surgery.  That’s 4 they’ll need to do.  sheesh.   Since I’m already here she immediately sends me for an EKG.   After all the chemo I had she needs to be sure my heart is healthy enough for surgery.   So, I get to do that.   Today is the solar eclipse and I’m gonna miss it cuz I’ve been here and I have another impromptu appointment.   Oh well, this is more important but I would love to see something that hasn’t happened in YEARS!! 

I get my EKG and instructions and check in for surgery.   My heart is still beating like a champ.  There was no damage from the chemotherapy.  YAY!!!    It’s great to know my heart is still healthy.    Getting damage to the heart from chemo is a big risk.    There are a lot of things I need to get done medically before next Friday.   It’s a relief to know surgery is coming soon.   I’ll feel a lot better mentally knowing the rest of that crap, if any, will be scraped out.   My chest port will come out and all I’ll need after that is radiation.   This whole journey is getting closer to completion.   The one thing I’m not gonna like is not being able to get in the pool.  After surgery, I’m not allowed to swim or soak in water for 2 weeks.   Awe man!   I have really enjoyed the pool.   It washes away my worries and helps me feel better physically.   When I’m in the water my aches and pains go away.   Of course it wears off after I get out but it does help to loosen my muscles and joints.   

Well for now the ball is rolling again.  Here we go with phase 2 of my journey.   I’m still waiting patiently to feel better.  This Thursday, it’ll be 3 weeks since my last chemo.  Soon I’ll start posting pics of the growth of my hair.   My fuzzies are starting to strengthen up and my mouth sores have FINALLY gone away!!   Good Lord!  I had them suckers for 8 weeks straight.   All of my eyebrows are gone and I’m horrible at drawing them in.   I never draw in my eyebrows, never had to.   My eye lashes are down to a slim number.  Good news,  I haven’t lost any more weight. I am still holding steady.   I’m still waiting for the day to feel like ‘me’ again.   I thought I would feel good by now but it’s taking longer than I thought.  The chemo should already be out of my body.   My feet are still very tingly.  Guess it’ll take some time for the neuropathy to get better too.   It’s been nice not having to stress out about work and I’m home when Dominic leaves and gets home from school.  He loves that.   My food is tasting so much better, my taste buds are coming back and it doesn’t hurt to eat anymore.  I’ve been getting better sleep but nothing to get too excited over.   I could still use more.   Don’t know what’s up with these aches and pains but I keep telling myself maybe tomorrow it’ll be better.   I sure hope so.  I just wanna feel good.    I know I’ll get there. . . . .  Someday.



Once again, appointments are getting shoved down my throat!!  😔





The light at the end of the Tunnel

Today is the day!!   

Aug. 3 –

As I get myself going and get ready, I’m as calm as can be.   Today is my last chemotherapy infusion.   Wow!!  It feels like it’s been a long time comin’.  From March when I started til now.  What a crazy, horrible journey.   A journey that has had so many ups and downs.  Frustrations, madness, and so many other emotions.  Sometimes you don’t realize the strength you really have til it’s put to the test.  This has surely tested me.   It has tested my strength in every way, my faith and everything that makes me, me.  I didn’t realize how strong I’ve become.  It has definitely changed me.    It hasn’t changed who I am in my heart, but I believe it has made me a better person.   I see so many things differently.   I see things more clearer.   I feel a whole lot deeper.   I’m more gentle with how I speak.  My heart feels like it’s opened up wider and bigger.   I keep thinking a lot about that saying, “don’t sweat the small stuff.”  That is the truth.  When you’re faced with this kind of obstacle,  the small stuff I used to fret over doesn’t even matter.  Be thankful, ALWAYS. 

 During this course of treatment I have found out which friends are truly there to stick their neck out for you.   It’s amazing the ones that have stepped up to the plate.  I am truly grateful for friends like them.   

My nephew is here to stay with my son.  I’m waiting on Brittany and Clara Sue.   The 3 of us are going to my appt. together.   The rest of my crusaders, hopefully show up later.   I told them that they didn’t have to be there for the whole thing but I wanted them there when I finished and rang the bell.  That is important for me.   We did this together.   They were all there for me in some way, shape or form.   

Amazingly,  I slept pretty good.  I thought that I was going to be wide awake and anxious with thousands of thoughts going thru my mind about today.   I hope it turns out how I see it in my mind.   Ever since I posted my news on social media, which was just last night,  I have gotten tons of support.  Lots of messages with kind thoughts and words. 

My appt is at 11.   By 3, I hope to be done.   Tonight I can sleep with the fact that this part is all over.  I made it through and now I can start the healing process.  I can start building myself back up.   I’ve been knocked down so many times through this process, I can’t wait to go up.  It can only get better from here, right? 

Brittany is here.   She took the day off of work (we work together)  just so that she could be there for me today.   That just touched my soul.  It means so much.   She’s like a little sister to me.   It makes me happy the love and support I’ve received.   It feeds your strength.  It’s soul food.   Clara Sue gets here and we get ready to leave for my final visit.   Eeeekkk.   I think I’m gonna get emotional.   I hope my nephew and my son show up later.  They just have to be there.  Dominic won’t be allowed to the back ( infusion )  but I hope he can be there when I ring that bell.  I don’t wanna do this without him. 

We get to the cancer center and don’t even have to wait.  We barely had a seat in the waiting area when they came out to get me.   It was before 11.   Wow, maybe this will go quick!  I get weighed in, vitals taken, and we’re ready to get started.   I get my usual window seat.   Maybe the dove will come visit me for good luck.    It’s a beautiful day outside.   My mood is fantastic.   I already feel relief and I’m not even done.    Just knowing that the end of this part has come has been a huge burden taken off of my shoulders.   

As Brittany and Clara Sue leave to get us lunch,  Lisa, (my oncology nurse) talks to me about the journey I have overcome as she hooks me up for the last time.   She reminds me that the hardest part of this will be over soon.   The rest of my journey won’t be this bad.  I’ll breeze right through it.   I’ve done so well even though the side effects have been a nightmare.   I really hope the rest of it is as simple as they say.   She starts me on my premeds.    Thank the Lord this will be the last time I’ll need those steroids.   I’ve hated those!!! 

Brittany and Clara Sue show up with lunch.   They got Long John Silvers.   They also brought those funny hats.   So, here we are, eating lunch, wearing our silly LJS hats, sitting by the window to look outside for the last time.   The hats were fun.  It’s a good day.  Premeds are done and I’m hooked up to my last chemotherapy.   Lisa tells me,  “1 more hour!”  😀  Yay, I’m getting excited.   I send a text to Penny and tell her, “time to knock this shit out of the park!! ❤ 👊 💪🎀 ❣  Bitch be gone!” 🎀 🎀  I wish she was here.  She’s at work.     

Slowly my crusaders start to trickle in.   Both my brothers are here and Marybeth just showed up with a chocolate turtle cheesecake to die for.  mmmmm   That’s my treat to share with everyone.  My heart stopped and swelled with happiness as my nephew and my son showed up.    *Gasp*   I can’t believe they let Dominic back here!!!   He’s not even allowed and yet, he’s here.   Tears of joy filled my eyes.   He brought me a bouquet of flowers.   I’m sooooo happy he’s here.   Unfortunately, after a few minutes, he was spotted and we got in trouble for having him there.   Children aren’t allowed in the infusion center.   So, they made him leave.  He had to go to the waiting room.  😔 That made me very sad but I knew it would happen.  1/2 hour left.  I was very surprised when Penny and her husband, Manuel walked around the corner.  I started to cry.    I’m happy she made it.   I didn’t think she would be able to.   All of my crusaders are here.   We’re gonna finish this together. 

Everyone took turns going out to the waiting room to sit with Dominic til I was done.  Time is really flying by.  This is going quickly!   I’m almost finished.   Tammy sent me a text and told me to feel every emotion I could feel and to ring the hell out of that bell.   I can’t wait.  I look up at the drip bag on my chemo pole ( I don’t know if I ever told you, I named my chemo pole Joaquin)  it’s almost empty.   eeek.    A few minutes later, the machine starts to ‘beep’.   Indicating that it’s done.  I inhale deeply at the thought of being finished.   Lisa comes to unhook me.   She asked everyone to wait by the bell for me.  Clara Sue and Penny stayed with me while she did this.  When the wires were all off I could feel the emotions rising from the pit of my stomach to my throat.   I gathered my things.  Clara Sue and Penny walked to the front and my brother Jake came to walk out with me.  They’re all waiting for me.  I start to tear up.   As I walk towards them, Lisa says, “before you start to cry, let me get a picture of you holding the bell as if I was gonna ring it.”   We get the picture. 


 Now she wants me to read the poem on the bell.   Oh gosh,  I don’t know if I’ll be able to.  My emotions are on overload.   Here goes.  Deep breath.   *sniff, sniff*



“Ring this bell, three times well,  it’s toll to clearly say.    My treatments done, this course is run and I am on my way.”


After I was done reading it, I paused for a few moments as they all told me to ‘ring it, ring it.”   There are some things I need to say first before I do.  I have to thank my loved ones.   I hope they don’t kick me out.   I look at the bell and turn to my son,   “Dominic, my son,  I ring this bell for you. . . for us.   My brothers,  I know we don’t say this often, but I do love you very much.   My crusaders, Thank you for being with me, I appreciate everything you’ve done.  And Clara Sue, my # 1,  from the very beginning you have never left my side.  Thank you for everything.  You’ve done everything my Mom would have done.  I love you, thank you for that.”    “Ready?”    *ding, ding, ding* 

 I can’t explain the rush of emotions.  For a moment I just stood there til Lisa came to hug me.   I guess a part of me was in disbelief that I finally made it to this point.   I thought I was gonna fall apart and just break down.    I didn’t.  I teared up a bit but that was it.   I surprised myself.   We hugged, took pictures.  I gathered my things and we all walked out. 



My crusaders!


 I’m done,  I’m really really done.   Why does it all seem so unreal?  Did I really just endure the last 5 months?  5 months of hell?  Maybe now I can breathe.   Maybe my life will slowly fall back into place.  I need to decompress.   I  wanna go home with my son.   I don’t want to go have a celebration, not yet.   I just wanna be with my son.   Is that weird, weird that I don’t want to celebrate?  Some of us went back to my house for a while then Dominic and I had the rest of the afternoon to ourselves.  Just what I wanted.  I slowly started to call and text the rest of my family/friends to let them know I was all done.  It is a relief but I really dont feel a whole lot different.   Everything now just seems like a blur.  Like if I’ve been watching it all play out in a movie.   I was waiting for that release of emotions I’ve been needing but it never happened.  I thought I was going to ball my eyes out.  I’ve been holding it all inside for almost half of the year.  I didn’t cry at all.  I almost don’t feel anything.  Is that weird?  I feel like my emotions were suddenly somehow detached.  This isn’t what I expected at all.  I expected just the opposite.   Maybe in time I’ll start to cry it all out.  It needs to come out.  I guess it’s just not gonna happen right away.   Oh well.  We’ll see.   For now,  I’m going to be thankful.    Thankful that I have my life.   Thankful that I’ve conquered this quest and that I had the strength to do it.   I’m gonna close the chapter on this one and hope to never read it again.  New chapters are ahead.  No looking back.   Moving forward.  I’m gonna sleep tonight ready for tomorrow and a new beginning.   I’ve been waiting for this.   Yay me!!!!   I made it!  Thank you Lord!!




I had my hands on that bell, we all rang it together! ! ! !



Ready for a new day, new beginnings! !  ❣  🙂













🎵 It’s a great day to be Alive!🎶

This is a song.  A country song sung by Travis Tritt.   Some of the words are just me.   Not all words pertain to what I’m going through but some do.    Every time I hear it, I think to myself,   “Yes!   It is a great day to be alive!!”  Every day is a great day to be alive.  The chorus seems to say what I feel.  There is a bridge in it that describes what I felt way too many times.  Sitting alone in my room, lonely and desperately shouting out from the inside of my soul.  Smiling on the outside and falling apart on the inside.   Not everyday will be like this.   I know in time it will get better.  I know the sun will continue to shine.   No matter how hard the times are. 

 But there are some good days too.  And today is one of them.  So I’m gonna jot some of these words down and let you listen to the song.  Music soothes my soul.  Some songs just speak to me.  I’ve learned not to take anything for granted.   Yeah, I’m doing alright!


🎵  Yeah I think I’ll make me some homemade soup.  Feelin’ pretty good and that’s the truth.  It’s neither drink nor drug induced.  No, I’m just doin’ alright 🎶

🎼  And it’s a great day to be alive.  I know the sun still shining when I close my eyes.   There’s some hard times in the neighborhood.  But why can’t everyday be just this good?”🎵   

🎵 Sometimes it’s lonely.   Sometimes it’s only me and the shadows that fill this room.   Sometimes I’m falling, desperately calling, howling at the moon.    Ahooooo 🎶





Why can’t everyday be just this good? ?